The nine women in this chorus have all been sentenced to life in prison. They share a moving song about their experiences — one that reveals their hopes, regrets and fears. "I'm not an angel," sings one, "but I'm not the devil." Filmed at an independent TEDx event inside Muncy State Prison, it's a rare and poignant look inside the world of people imprisoned with no hope of parole. Topics: Tedtalks, TED, Talks, music, prison, TEDxMuncyStatePrison, 2014
In 1991, Shaka Senghor shot and killed a man. He was, he says, "a drug dealer with a quick temper and a semi-automatic pistol." Jailed for second degree murder, that could very well have been the end of the story. But it wasn't. Instead, it was the beginning of a years-long journey to redemption, one with humbling and sobering lessons for us all. Topics: TedTalks, TED, Talks, crime, culture, prison, TED2014, 2014
Jeff Smith spent a year in prison. But what he discovered inside wasn’t what he expected -- he saw in his fellow inmates boundless ingenuity and business savvy. He asks: Why don't we tap this entrepreneurial potential to help ex-prisoners contribute to society once they're back outside? (From the TED Talent Search event TED@NewYork.) Topics: TEDTalks, TED, Talks, business, prison, TED@New York, 2012
In the United States, the agencies that govern prisons are often called ‘Department of Corrections.’ And yet, their focus is on containing and controlling inmates. Dan Pacholke, Deputy Secretary for the Washington State Department of Corrections, shares a different vision: of prisons that provide humane living conditions as well as opportunities for meaningful work and learning. Topics: TedTalks, TED, Talks, crime, culture, prison, TEDxMonroeCorrectionalComplex, 2014
“It’s said that to be a poet, you have to go to hell and back.” Cristina Domenech teaches writing at an Argentinian prison, and she tells the moving story of helping incarcerated people express themselves, understand themselves — and glory in the freedom of language. Watch for a powerful reading from one of her students, an inmate, in front of an audience of 10,000. In Spanish with subtitles. Topics: Tedtalks, TED, Talks, creativity, crime, education, language, poetry, prison, TEDxRiodelaPlata, 2014
Political prisoners aren't the only ones being tortured -- the vast majority of judicial torture happens in ordinary cases, even in 'functioning' legal systems. Social activist Karen Tse shows how we can, and should, stand up and end the use of routine torture. Topics: TEDTalks, TED, Talks, global issues, law, politics, prison, war, TEDGlobal 2011, 2011
Damon Horowitz teaches philosophy through the Prison University Project, bringing college-level classes to inmates of San Quentin State Prison. In this powerful short talk, he tells the story of an encounter with right and wrong that quickly gets person Topics: TEDTalks, TED2011, TED, Talks, crime, culture, education, global issues, philosophy, prison, 2011
Scott Fraser studies how humans remember crimes -- and bear witness to them. In this powerful talk, which focuses on a deadly shooting at sunset, he suggests that even close-up eyewitnesses to a crime can create "memories" they could not have seen. Why? Because the brain abhors a vacuum. Topics: TEDTalks, TED, Talks, crime, global issues, government, law, memory, mind, prison, science,...
Nalini Nadkarni challenges our perspective on trees and prisons -- she says both can be more dynamic than we think. Through a partnership with the state of Washington, she brings science classes and conservation programs to inmates, with unexpected results. Topics: TEDTalks, TED, Talks, biosphere, crime, environment, nature, prison, social change, TED2010, 2010
As a teenager, Ismael Nazario was sent to New York’s Rikers Island jail, where he spent 300 days in solitary confinement — all before he was ever convicted of a crime. Now as a prison reform advocate he works to change the culture of American jails and prisons, where young people are frequently subjected to violence beyond imagination. Nazario tells his chilling story and suggests ways to help, rather than harm, teens in jail. Topics: Tedtalks, TED, Talks, activism, cities, crime, prison, social change, violence, youth, TEDxNewYork,...
In the United States, two institutions guide teenagers on the journey to adulthood: college and prison. Sociologist Alice Goffman spent six years in a troubled Philadelphia neighborhood and saw first-hand how teenagers of African-American and Latino backgrounds are funneled down the path to prison — sometimes starting with relatively minor infractions. In an impassioned talk she asks, “Why are we offering only handcuffs and jail time?” Topics: Tedtalks, TED, Talks, crime, culture, inequality, prison, race, violence, TED2015, 2015
What happens before a murder? In looking for ways to reduce death penalty cases, David R. Dow realized that a surprising number of death row inmates had similar biographies. In this talk he proposes a bold plan, one that prevents murders in the first place. (Filmed at TEDxAustin.) Topics: TEDTalks, TED, Talks, death, global issues, law, politics, prison, storytelling, tedx, TEDxAustin,...
Philip Zimbardo knows how easy it is for nice people to turn bad. In this talk, he shares insights and graphic unseen photos from the Abu Ghraib trials. Then he talks about the flip side: how easy it is to be a hero, and how we can rise to the challenge. Topics: TEDTalks, TED, Talks, children, crime, culture, education, evil, global issues, heroism, peace,...
Is there a definitive line that divides crazy from sane? With a hair-raising delivery, Jon Ronson, author of The Psychopath Test, illuminates the gray areas between the two. (With live-mixed sound by Julian Treasure and animation by Evan Grant.) Topics: TEDTalks, TED, Talks, culture, mind, prison, storytelling, TED2012, 2012